This morning upon awakening I wrote an email to a friend who is going through a rough time. I expressed all sort of opinions on what I thought they should or should not do. Even while writing it I began to realize that much of I was saying was motivated by my own fear. Yes, there was concern and worry for them, but there was also a whole heap of my own fears of our friendship changing, a smattering of fear from my past experiences in similar situations and a finishing drizzle of fear of the unknown. It was about ten minutes after sending the email I drew today's card.
20 Compassion – Transcending Judgement.
I laughed when I saw it. Okay, perhaps it was more of a rueful snort. "Yeah, that's right," it seemed to say, "I'm looking at you Miss Judgypants."
In more traditional tarot decks this card is Judgement and if often interpreted as weighing of ones "sins" in order to purge yourself of them. In the Tarot of Transformation it is about cultivating compassion, trying to see others and ourselves through compassionate eyes, and seeking an understanding of where the judgements we make come from.
Fear can be something difficult to control, particularly if it stems from past traumas or hurts. When something sets that fear response off we simply react, "Oh, shit…here we go again! Batten down the hatches, prepare the cannons, it's time to defend!!!"
In these moments I can be overwhelmed with a head to toe need to protect myself and my heart. I may get defensive, push people away, mentally scream at the top of my lungs about how wrong I think someone is. Often it will not be until after the fact that I will fully understand what just happened. And then, I find my judgement turned fully upon myself, berating myself for my lack of compassion and my inability to recognize my own fears.
I know that part of overcoming this is to learn to accept myself more, to understand that I am just as imperfect as everyone else and should extend the same compassion to myself that I hope to extend to others. It is also continuing to try to be more present in my own mind and my body so that I may be more aware of when my own insecurities and fears are rising up to take control. It is an ongoing process...